Saturday, October 14, 2006

Blending party results

So it's time to cut to the chase. Here are the wines we tasted blind at our blending party and our collective, cryptic notes:

2005 Lodi Zinfandel, Lodi, CA (Z,5, code #31) - upfront aroma, concord grape flavor, nice, smooth, fruity (90), soft tannin, mid fruit, light acid, light alcohol, concord/zin, interesting, fruity but full

2005 Chez Ray Blackberry, Dry, Westport CT (BK5, code #36) - acid, alcohol, nice, smooth, oaky, fruity, glide finish (89), no fruit, light tannin, ? fruit, mid acid, mid alcohol, slightly metallic, nice finish

2005 Lodi Zinfandel with Stems, Lodi, CA (Z'5, code #41) - zen nose, tannin, fruity, smooth, fragrant (91), zin!, red-light, soft tannin, mid fruit, soft acid, mid alcohol, tasteless at first, bitter aftertaste

2005 Lodi Syrah, Lodi, CA (S5, code #46) - nice nose and fruit, rich, acidic, sweet, nice finish (90), hi-red nose, red burnt merlot, soft tannin, mid fruit, soft acid, soft alcohol, dry, lots of bite, very tasty

2005 Windsor Russian River Cabernet Franc, Sonoma County, CA (F5, code #71) - fruit, light aroma, nice tannin balance (*), flavorful, high tannin, alcohol (85), cherry/cab, mid tight tannin, mid fruit, mid acid, mid alcohol, richest so far

2005 Rutherford Bench Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa County, CA (CR5, code #75) - balance, nice, heat (*), heavy tannin and alcohol, balanced (83), red/cherry/cab Napa, mid/fine tannin, lean fruit, mid acid, tad high alcohol, very good, pretty alcoholic

2005 State Lane Yountville Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa, CA (CS5, code #76) - brick red, nice nose, smooth tannins (*), complex, fruit, fragrant (87), syrah, dark red, fine/mid tannin, mid fruit, mid acid, tad hot alcohol, full and biting

2005 Los Lomas Carneros District Merlot, Napa County, CA (M'5, code #84) - tannic, dark, lean, flint, thin, quick finish, light tannins (78), dark red/syrah, mid/soft tannin, lean fruit, mid acid, mid alcohol, sharp

2005 Las Brisas Carneros District Merlot, Sonoma County, CA (M5, code #85) - balance, nice, heat (*), very oaky and fragrant, rich tannin, high alcohol (87), red/petit syrah, mid/hi tannin, mid fruit, mid/hi acid, mid/hi alcohol

2005 Carneros District Pinot Noir, Sonoma County, CA (P5, code #90) - light, bright, tight, tar, light, high acid and tannins (80), mid cherry, tight tannin, lean fruit, mid acid, mid alcohol, quick, rich

2005 Lodi Petit(e) Si(y)rah, Lodi, CA (PS5, code #93) - balance, not much fruit, not much stuff, light, undistinguished (75), dark fruit, cab?, flat, mid tannin, mid fruit, mid acid, mid alcohol, very light

2005 Stage Gulch Vineyard Syrah, Sonoma County, CA (SG5, code #96) - smoke, roast meat, oak, round (**), light, burnt toast (84), red raspberry, meat, lo/mid tannin, mid fruit, mid acid, mid alcohol

2005 Windsor Russian River Zinfandel, Sonoma County, CA (Z5, code #99) - fruit up front and tannins on side (*), dry, rich, high alcohol (80), soft tannin, lean fruit, high acids, hot alcohol, neutral, good

And now for the fun part, the recommended blends:

Bad News Bears: 31/76/84 (Lodi Zin / State Lane Cab Sauv / Carneros Napa Merlot)

Z/ab: 76/31 (State Lane Cab Sauv / Lodi Zin)
Cyborg: 46/36 (but "N/G" says another taster!) (Lodi Syrah / Blackberry)
M/in: 85/41 (Carneros Sonoma Merlot / Lodi Zin w/stems)
Bathroom Sink: 31/41/46/36/85 (Lodi Zin / Cyborg / M/in)

Power Wine: 96/75 ("Might work! Fruit needs to come forward.") (Stage Gulch Syrah / Rutherford Cab Sauv)
Balanced Mid-Red: 46/41 ("A bit hot, soft tannins, good short term") (Lodi Syrah / Lodi Zin w/stems)
Opposites Attract: 31/75 ("Good blend!") (Lodi Zin / Rutherford Cab Sauv)

Thanks to all who toiled in the name of leaving no blend untasted.


Updated blending notes from October 2007:
Modified Power Wine to add 1/2 Lodi Zinfandel (essentially turning it into a CSZ).
Modified Cyborg to add 1/2 Lodi Zinfandel.
Bottled a few Bad News Bears.

Also settled on some final varietal blends (ie, min 75% varietal):
Zin: Russian River Sonoma Zin + 1/10 Lodi Viognier + 1/10 Cabernet
Cabernet: Rutherford Cabernet + 1/2 State Lane Cabernet
Syrah: Stage Gulch Syrah + 1/8 Lodi Viognier + 1/8 Rutherford Cabernet

Named Balanced Mid-Red "CoSZi": bottled a few as described: Lodi Syrah + Lodi Zin
Bottled State Lane Cabernet Sauvignon as is - no need to blend.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, lots of detail. Some conflicting opinions. (I stick to my high regard for Cyborg!) But it was really a lot of fun.